The brand new series of Love Island started last night, and it’s got me (and the rest of the country) hooked already! I’m not usually keen on any kind of reality show, or ‘trash TV’ as some people call it, but Love Island is a whole different ball game.
After starting life as a celebrity dating series back in 2005, with the likes of Calum Best, Rebecca Loos, Lee Sharpe and Abi Titmus (remember them?) shacked up together in Fiji, Love Island has become one of the most popular reality shows on air. In fact, last year’s launch show made it the most-watched digital programme of the year for the 16-34 age group.
So what is it about this dating show full of super hot men and women that reels us all in? Let’s break it down.
We Love The One Liners
Every series of Love Island brings an abundance of quotes, memes and one liners, and we can’t get enough of them! Some of the best stand the test of time and make it into subsequent series; they even sneak a few of them into the decor of the villa. From Michael’s ‘chaldish’ meme, Wes’ ‘doing bits’, Chris calling everyone ‘muggy’, to literally everyone having a ‘type on paper’, these random quotes have made their way into every Love Island fan’s vocabulary as if they were always there. This season’s meme-fest has already begun, and I can’t wait to spend the next eight weeks sharing them all – apologies in advance to anyone who follows me on social media!
We Love The Drama
At times, Love Island can be absolutely brutal. The breaking up of couples to send the boys off to Casa Amor, the postcards, the ‘movie nights’ – all causing absolute carnage when the couples are reunited. No relationship is plain sailing, and the producers of Love Island almost make sure of it with their game playing and sneaky reveals, but we can’t help but watch the car crash that follows. It peaks our interest just at the right time – when the couples are getting along a little too well and they need to shake it up. They’ll throw in a bombshell or reveal some unseen naughty behaviour just to cause drama – and we all get to watch it unfold!
We Love The Fashion
Love Island usually pairs up with a ‘fast fashion’ brand for the Islanders’ wardrobes, with 2021 seeing them kitted out in ISAWITFIRST clothing. However, this year they’ve made a huge change, partnering up with eBay to provide the Islanders with pre-loved clothing for a more sustainable approach. This is a real statement from Love Island against fast fashion, and they should be applauded for using their platform to promote a more environmentally friendly attitude towards clothes shopping. Recent research from eBay revealed that UK shoppers are more conscious of fast fashion, with 20% admitting to buying more pre-loved clothing now than two years ago. Love Island viewers also have easy access to eBay’s Pre-Loved Fashion through a new ‘Shop the Show’ feature within the official Love Island app.
We Love The Office Chat
For eight weeks of the year, Love Island takes over our lives (myself included) and dominates the conversation in the office. We need to hear everyone’s opinions on the Islanders and the couples they end up in, who we think likes who, who are our favourites, and who we think will be dumped next. Here at Embryo, we operate a hybrid working system, so we have our own Slack channel dedicated to Love Island to make sure we can all still take part in the daily chat from our various locations around the North West.
Back in 2020, I’d never even considered watching Love Island. I just didn’t get the appeal. But every other person on my row of desks in the office was obsessed with it. People I thought were too switched on to be taken in by it. I also realised I was getting massive FOMO – I had no idea what they were talking about for most of the day, and not getting the inside Love Island jokes. So I gave the winter series a go.
Episode one – I was hooked.
After the coupling up, I was somehow already invested in these random strangers and whether they’d last the series. They know just how to play us – they give us enough to think the couples might be compatible in the first episode and let our imagination take us through to the next episode. And now I love the daily Love Island chat that comes with watching – it’s all part of the fun!
And Finally, We Love… Love
If the history of Saturday night entertainment shows teaches us anything, it’s that we love to see other people falling in love (and also winning prizes on game shows, but that’s a story for another time!). From Blind Date back in the 80s and 90s to Take Me Out in the noughties, we love to matchmake strangers and follow the ins and outs of their blossoming romances.
The plethora of other dating shows currently on TV only further proves the point; from Celebs Go Dating, First Dates, Married At First Sight and Naked Attraction (if you haven’t seen this last one, be sure to look it up for the pure shock factor), we simply love to watch others fall in love (or get naked, see: Naked Attraction).
From the fairytale endings of the Disney films we watched as children, to the teen movies that had us willing the two main protagonists to overcome some adversity and get together (I’m looking at you, 10 Things I Hate About You), through to the dreamy romcoms we enjoy as adults, we can’t help but be taken in by an unfolding love story, regardless of our age.
And whilst not all of the couples on Love Island make it to marriage and kids – or even the end of the week, for some – we become invested in their journeys, keeping us hooked for the whole of the summer. So if you’ve yet to watch Love Island, give it a go this season while there’s still time to catch up and you’ll (hopefully) see what all the fuss is about!